Offices and Labs
Profile IntroductionThough numerous studies have sought to identify the underlying mechanisms contributing to human-specific neurological traits and diseases, a large proportion of causal genes remain undiscovered. Our group uses genome sequencing to pinpoint genes contributing to innovative human-specific phenotypes and their role in disease, primate evolution, population diversity, and gene regulation.
|2009||Ph.D.||Human Genetics||University of Oxford - NIH|
|2004||B.S.||Biochemical Engineering||Michigan State University|
Human genetics and genomics
We are interested in identifying the underlying causal genes and mutations that make us uniquely human using genetics and genomics techniques. Using a "genome first" approach, one area of interest is identifying genes and complex genomic variants unique to the human lineage, such as duplicated genes, that may contribute to phenotypic differences.
Alternately, we can also identify important genes contributing to human traits by identifying mutations that lead to malfunctions of these traits such as reading (dyslexia), higher intellect (intellectual disability), social behavior (autism), language (specific language development), etc. Finally, we can use molecular evolution and population genetics to identify and functionally characterize genes exhibiting extraordinary signatures of selection.
Zebrafish to test human neural genes
We use zebrafish to understand the function of human genes contributing to disease and phenotypic traits. With the advent of CRISPR gene editing tools, we can now systematically mutate and assess the phenotypic consequences of these mutations for any gene of interest.
Sequencing complex genomic variation
We are developing methods to capture complex genomic variation using long-read sequencing technologies otherwise recalcitrant to analysis.
Department and Center Affiliations
CBS Grad Group Affiliations
Specialties / Focus
- Molecular Genetics
- Gene Regulation
- Genomics, Proteomics and Metabolomics
- Molecular Medicine
- Human Genetics and Genomics
- Integrated Genetics and Genomics
- Model Organism Genetics
A complete list of publications can be found here.